Monday, 16 January 2012

Another Try/Fail Swipe At Religion

So what exactly is the argument?
1. The religious right wants prayer in tax payer funded schools.
2. An incredibly small minority teaches hate (not love).
3. Therefore having prayer can be dangerous.

Or perhaps;
1. The religious right wants prayer in tax payer funded schools.
2. The right wants to impose their agenda on 'the rest of us'.
3. Imposing agenda's (especially through prayer) is dangerous.

Whatever #2 is (In Syllogism A or B), it seems the common points are premise 1 and the conclusion.  In essence, the religious right makes a request for prayer and that is dangerous.

The same 'logic' can be used to debunk the very position this artwork is depicting:

1. The non-religious left (stereotyping for sake of simplicity only) does not want prayer in taxpayer funded schools.
2. Prayer is a powerful force for helping the majority of people love, relate, learn and operate in humility.
3. Therefore not having prayer can be dangerous.

The non-religious left does not want prayer in schools
The left wants to impose their agenda on the rest of us
Imposing agendas (especially without the direction of learning to love through prayer) can be dangerous.

The photos do not say much of anything except the 'artists' inability to clearly articulate a meaningful position.


  1. How about E:

    1. Religious people wants prayer in taxpayer funded schools.

    2. They are state-run taxpayer funded schools.

    3. Religious choice is an important but private decision an individual makes and it is vitally important to separate individual choices on spirituality from the state, separate church and state the way the American Fathers of Confederation wanted it (for the US) and many Canadian Fathers wanted it, for very good reason.

  2. Fair Ted, but not my point. I am not arguing for prayer in schools...simply against the the stupidity of this picture.

    1. You are missing the point of the picture ENTIRELY, because you can't take off your jebus glasses long enough to actually think about what it means. Since the public schoolos are funded by EVERYONE'S money, that means that they aren't allowed to show favouritism to any one superstition over the others. So that means either EVERYONE'S superstition is represented, or NO-ONE'S superstition is represented. You might be happy as a clam on the first day of the year, when it's your particular sub-sect's turn (of the 35000 different sects that call themselves "christian") to have it's turn, but I'm pretty sure that you'd be crapping auto parts on every following day, when the Shiite Muslims, and the Jains, and the Wiccans, and the Buddhists, and the Mormons, and the Zoroastrians, and the Sunni Muslims, and the Confucianists, and the Voodoo priests, and the animists, and the volcano worshippers, and the sun worshippers, and the Pastafarians, and the Rastafarians, and every OTHER sect gets their turn. That's all that this picture is saying.

    2. thanks for the comment Anonymous, I may do a post on this in the next few days. stay tuned.

  3. replace the pentagram with a picture of Al Gore and replace the word right with left and thats pretty well what we've got right now, but I guess that ok to "tolerant" left

  4. Climatecriminal is so right, and let me also add how this same crowd has no problem with prayer in public schools provided it is not Christian prayer. Just one example is using public schools as a mosque during school hours. Funny how they see no problem with that.

  5. Who is "they" Alain?

    That's the problem with discussions of this sort. Too much stupid interferes.

    It's as stupid as saying "they" all want to indoctrinate us with their Christian prayers.

    What happened in that one, single TDSB school was wrong, but also grossly misdescribed by those who object to anything Muslim and by those who want Christian prayers but none other. The prayer in school thing is a related but different issue as to what happened there. In that case, a request was made for some space for a group to practice their own prayers. That is very different than setting aside time in the day, like before or after the national anthem, for prayer or "a moment of silence" for everyone.

    Don't get me wrong: I still object to what the TDSB did there. There should be total separation of Church and State for the good of all and the improvement of freedom. But that example is a different situation and to conflate the two is, as I noted above, to allow stupid to enter into the discussion.

  6. Ted, Separation of church and state does not exist in Canada nor has it ever been part of our history. That is a reference to the USA. As for they I am referring to the Left, and it is well documented how any evidence of Christianity will get them all worked up but not other religions.

  7. I'm sure you would consider me "Left" Alain and I don't feel that way. Don't let stupid get in the way of an important discussion. Not all on the "Right" are raving lunatic theocrats, as much as some hyperpartisans would like to claim to be.

    As for Canadian history, you really should read a bit more of it. Separation of church and state, along with rep-by-pop, were probably the two most important values for George Brown and the Reformers who formed part of the Fathers of Confederation. Certainly it was a very very primary significant issue for D'arcy McGee.

    In 1867, we did not draft a Constitution like the US with a bill of rights that created and formalized the separation. In English Canada it was pretty fundamental though for most of the English Fathers.

    MacDonald didn't really care except to the extent not doing anything about it placated the blues Roman Catholic French Canadiens who would not have joined if the Roman Catholic Church and Canada East government were not tied to each other. However, by the time of the quiet revolution and since, the separation of church and state as a primary belief has become as sacrosanct in Quebec (pardon the pun) as the rest of the country if not more.

  8. This recovering teacher and late-to-the-supper Christian would like all to leave religion out of the schools entirely but rigorously teach Western Civilisation. It is no accident that all countries that entered the modern era with solid Christian majorities are the most civilised and developed in the world; also it is suicidal to trust todays teachers to promote the kind of morality and pride of culture that made us the best. We owe our students compulsory education in English, math/science, and how you get be, and remain, best in the world and the best way to make sure that teachers get it right is to privatise all education.

  9. Ted, I have read and studied our history which is why I wrote we do not have like the Americans a separation of church and state. The Queen is the official head of the Church of England and is also our queen. Canadian was founded as a Christian nation and a liberal parliamentary democracy, which is why public school days began with prayer and God Save The Queen. That the Liberals tried to erase this history and remake Canada does not change the facts. Although I am not Christian, it does not prevent me from recognising the facts.

    The war on Christianity is actually a war on our culture, traditions and history by what I label the Left, or should call the collectivists. I maintain the reason for this is that the corner stone of our civilisation is individual freedom. The biggest obstacle to implementing total collectivism remains individual freedom.

  10. Sorry, Alain, but with your words you show that you do not, in fact, know Canadian history, but only some conservative revisionist version of it.

    To the Fathers of Confederation, they did not think they were founding a Christian nation at all. Leaders like George Brown strongly believed that we had a nation of Protestants and wanted to assimilate the Catholics, but even more strongly he believed that our public institutions, especially schools, should be secular and all religion separated. The separation of church and state was fundamental to the Canadian leaders at the time. Even MacDonald would not take any lead or lessons or guidance from the Anglican Church.

    For the French Catholics elites it was different. But not by much. Laurier was one of the strongest supporters of the separation of church and state and wrote and spoke about it frequently. It is why the Quebec bishops threatened to excommunicate anyone who voted for him (which more than backfired as it strengthened Laurier's resolve on the issue and ultimately got the Pope to tell the bishops to back off, twice, at Laurier's request).

    If there was a so-called (cough cough) "war on Christians", it started 160 years ago and was fought by devout Christians.

  11. Dollops - Not sure what you mean.

    "rigorously teach Western Civilisation" and "We owe our students compulsory education in English, math/science". That is what students are taught. Of course they are also taught how to think critically, creatively, to communicate and work collaboratively (just as important). The way you speak about teachers and the profession is shocking - recovering like it was a disease? suicidal? best way to make sure teachers get it right is to privatize? I am proud to be a teacher and to work in a public education system that is ranked one of the most effective in the world. Evidently, you did not feel the same way. Privatizing all education is the quickest way to ensure that most of your population is uneducated.
    As for the picture- the message is pretty straight forward and there is really not much to analyze: if you advocate for prayer in public school and win, then be prepared to get prayers and reflections of all kind(i.e. represents all tax payers). It is either all or nothing. The picture promotes a stereotype of the Christian Right who is ignorant or arrogant enough to not understand this very clear as day purpose of public education, is intolerant of other beliefs and would not want to send their child to a school where they will hear prayers and reflections that support non-Christian beliefs. I can only hope and assume that this very common portrayal of the Religious Right is the exception and not the norm.

    Alain - "As for they I am referring to the Left, and it is well documented how any evidence of Christianity will get them all worked up but not other religions." This statement is as ridiculous as saying that all those to the Right are intolerant.

  12. Disagree with the title of your blog post - not a swipe at religion. However, it is a swipe at the Religious Right. Contrary to what some have alluded to throughout this blog, the two are not synonymous. I am to the Left and I am religious as are all of my colleagues, most of my friends and my congregation.

    The difference of course is that we are not making headlines with fanatical representatives that make such outrageous claims as God is killing all of the birds to send us a message that we need to fix our economy and that God gives people who have had abortions children who are disabled as punishment and we need to treat all humans with love and compassion but to hell with them if they are poor - let's just bomb everyone we do not like. That's it - less government, more army. That will fix it. Perhaps that is where the stereotypes come from. Stop putting these crazies on the air - they are too easy to make fun of and they paint a horrible picture of the "Religious Right".

  13. Alright Christian Idiots, listen up.

    It means If prayer is allowed in schools, then that includes the prayers of all religions. Even the religions you Christians despise. Which happens to be every single religion on earth that is not Christianity.

    And the OP actually has the nerve to call other religions Hateful.

    Christian Hypocrisy is Limitless.

  14. The anonymous "disrespectful" poster has it correct. This isn't about syllogisms or revisionist history, it simply points out Christian hypocrisy. If Christians want religion in schools, they better get ready for Holy Wars breaking out while our children try to learn facts, math, history, and art.


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